The Consumer Category
We bring you the chic and unique, the best and most bizarre shopping offers both online and offline. We offer you tips on where to buy, and some of the less mainstream and crazy, individual and offbeat items on the internet. Anything that can be bought and sold can be featured here. And we love showcasing the best and worst art and design.
RIP L Feldstein: editor of the once great MAD magazine.
IN 1968, the Funland theme park in Margate, Kent, introduced a new attraction.
Created by Keith Albarn, The Spectrum presented psychedelic rooms, each space presenting intrigued youth with an adventure and a challenge. Rooms features “Ekistikit” – a GRP modular building and furniture system.
This was not infertile ground for sensory experimentation. Margate is a seaside town had a reputation for artistic endeavour:
Pathe News was there to showcase Albarn’s mental adventure:
Albarn did not stop there. As he tells us, he got better. In Girvan, a seaside town in Carrick, South Ayrshire, he created the Fifth Dimension, another psychedelic, fibreglass fun house.
JAMES Lileks has looked beyond the shards of lard and war-effort carrot stuck between our grey teeth to DIY British fashions of the mid 20th Century.
We kick off with…
Lovely bird – drove the lads down at the Enigma labs just mad, except for that chilly Turing fellow – but there doesn’t seem to be enough of her. The more you look at her, the more she looks like a doll that’s been put together from different parts, half of which were attached backwards. But it’s a nice jumper.
When in Brighton, give her a call; tell her Pinky sent you.
ANYONE seeking to send supplies to North Korea, needs to fill in this customs form:
Spotter: Tamerlane’s Thoughts
IN the 1960s, Sainsbury’s began selling own-label groceries. The packaging was marvellous:
Like these cornflakes from 1968.
And these Ritz crackers:
You can find out more in the book Own Label: Sainsbury’s Design Studio, 1962-1977:
In 1962, when Peter Dixon joined the Sainsburys Design Studio, a remarkable revolution in packaging design began. The supermarket was developing its distinctive range of Own Label products, and Dixons designs for the line were revolutionary: simple, stripped down, creative, and completely different from what had gone before. Their striking modernity pushed the boundaries, reflecting a period full of optimism. They also helped to build Sainsburys into a brand giant, the first real Super market of the time. This book examines and celebrates this paradigm shift, which redefined packaging design, and led to the creation of some of the most original packaging ever seen. Produced in collaboration with the Sainsbury family and The Sainsbury Archive, the book reveals an astonishing and exhaustive body of work. A unique insight into what and how we ate, the packaging is presented using both scanned original flat packets and photographic records made at the time by the design team. An essential book for graphic designers and those interested in the culture of consumerism, these designs remain fresh and relevant today. This feast of nostalgia taps into the fond memories of a generation brought up on these beautifully packaged goods.
Lard, ginger beer and wonderful pale ale (ask grandpa), via TrunkRecords:
The Creative Review noted Doxon’s vision:
“If you have a big batch of red labels one side and a big batch of green labels the other, then it’s best to design a white label with stark typography, which would then stand out from the other brands,” says Dixon of his approach to making sure shoppers noticed the own label goods on the shelves of its newly-opened ‘supermarkets’.
Bitter Lemon via LukeHoney:
DAVID Rose created a ‘love sought’ section for the London Review of Books. Rose was the organ’s advertising director when he developed the personals section in 1998. Lovelorn literary types wrote in. The very first classified ad went:
“Disaffiliated flâneur, jacked-up on Viagra and on the look-out for a contortionist trumpeter.”
FROM the women’s fashion section of the 1974 Fall-Winter Sears Catalog, here are 35 pages of earth-toned acrylics, skin-tight polyester, and knitted creations that should have never seen the light of day. Seventies fashions are fun to behold because they could be so frighteningly terrible; however, if you can resist the easy temptation to scoff at 70s styles and view them with an open mind, some are actually quite brilliant. Today’s everyday styles can be so tired and unremarkable – it’s refreshing to see something bold and unique. Come take a look….
A black and orange striped sweater-vest over a tight olive green turtleneck sweater…. can somebody explain how this happened? The simple answer is widespread recreational drug use, but I’m open to other theories.
IN 1943, The American Locomotive Company published this advert:
IN the 1950s, Lucky Tiger would seduce the girls. If you got really lucky, you could mount their heads.
THIS is great. Mona “(w), 31 searches in shared apartment in Berlin Friedrichshain”.
Tolerant Lesbian tolerant you
Min Room Size: 20m ² Max Rent: € 5
I, 31, am a good-natured open leftist* and openly feminist student of history (HU) and am searching a cosmopolitan and anti-capitalistic apartment to share with others in Friedrichshain/Kreuzberg. You need to be open minded when it comes to other lifestyle models and tolerance should be among your top values. Moreover it would be super if there was already a washing machine that I could also use in the apartment.
I don’t like aggressions and power games, and so I’m searching for an apartment that is 100% shared by women who are active against terror, war, racial madness, fascism, chauvinism and US cultural imperialism. I am myself a vegan and think that long-term living together makes sense when absolutely no animal-based products find a place in my apartment.
In general I am easy to get along with, but must also be able to say where the limits are and when I don’t want to see anyone. For me this is part of an honest cohabitation. In the past unfortunately I often have had to make the experience of putting up with people who stayed around even when I asked them to (temporarily) leave the apartment.
In return for a room (20-30 sqm) I offer work in the household, repairs and discussions (also therapeutic). Money is the lever of the powerful with which I cannot identify with. But because I respect other views, I would be willing to contribute to WLAN and electricity (even it belongs to the fundamental needs of a person and thus MUST be provided free of charge.)
I’m looking forward to the “casting”.
*Anarcho-syndicalism (but do not always agree with the International Workers Association)”
Mona is willing to pay is 5 euros.
THE sad truth is, nonfiction garbage is hard to come by. Libraries regularly cull their shelves, ridding the world of their outdated and tacky tomes. Plus, how many people are going to display any one of these books in their home library and endure the subsequent deep and abiding shame? Not many. So, they end up on the trash heap, gone forever…. That is, until someone like me resurrects them (at least their covers) for your viewing enjoyment. You’re welcome.
Your Horoscope for Today: With Venus moving into gentle Pisces this week, you will feel a distinct urge to dry hump human legs. You may even decide to accept a friend’s invitation to smell his/her anus. The afternoon and evening brings the possibility of lots of indoor pooping.
This book is fine, but I’m more interested in the companion volume: How To Live Selfishly, Enjoy Pornography, And Still Go To Heaven.
Finally, a guide to enduring those insufferable Polish people.
“Are you being sexually aroused by this picture?”
If your answer is “yes”, I think it owes more to your debilitating alcohol addiction than any advertising trickery. Is this orange rind supposed to remind me of a flaccid and dismembered sex organ? If so, then I am most definitely not aroused…. nor will I be for quite some time thanks to this.
In every life this woman was prone to staring blankly upward. Nutty theories like this were rampant in the 1970s, here’s another…
Among the many promises offered on the back:
How to use rituals and spells to attract money and prosperity!
How to use rituals and spells to attract and hold a lover!
How to ward off the Evil Eye and protect yourself against Secret Psychic Attack!
It says that the author was an accountant before he flaked out. Personally, it’s hard for me to take a witch or warlock seriously with those kinds of credentials.
“Morgan La Fey, Enchantress, Tax Professional and Financial Advisor” just doesn’t work. Neither does “Angmar the Witch King, C.P.A.”
In which we learn how to fire people via poetry or haiku. Especially interesting is the chapter on creating beautiful watercolor paintings of nature scenes… all signed “you’re fired”, of course.
Yeesh. This is just awkward. Let’s move on…
“Are the new sex therapists part of the legitimate medical community – or are they prostitutes?”
What in the ever lovin’ f**k? Was this really a question? I can understand if there was a healthy skepticism about this new profession; however, it seems a stretch to speculate that it entailed having sex for money. (But if it is true, I hope it’s not too late for me to make a drastic career change.)
“Is she the bearded lady, or is she part porcupine, or what? [see back cover]”
Ummm.… why in the name of all this holy would you ever think she is the bearded lady? For the curious, the back cover reads:
“What she has on her face are ordinary toothpicks broken in half; for some reason, a light touch makes them cling. Believe it… or Not!”
We know you’ve been faking it for a long time. Now, it’s time to learn how to really love that brat. And once you’ve figured that out, it’s on to that spouse of yours…
Well, it certainly makes things a lot easier if your wife happens to be a stone cold fox…
The back cover reads “The author and his (non-neurotic) wife.”
First of all, Stephen Baker obviously used Al Manning’s White Witchcraft to make this happen (there can be on other explanation). Second, I’m not thrilled with his cocky grin. We know you did well for yourself, Stephen. No need to gloat.
IN1965, Matchbox toys were die-cast objects of delight, produced by LESley Smith and RodNEY SMith’s Lesney Products & Co. Ltd.
This video show us how they were made:
GEORGE W. Bush’s paintings have been adapted to feature on pillows, bags, throws and clocks. Bush’s collection - “The Art of Leadership: A President’s Personal Diplomacy” – features the faces of his dad, Tony Blair, Vladimir Putin and Hamid Karzai.
IF you’ve visited Richard Littler’s Scarfolk, you will have come away with a feeling of how life was in mid-20th Century Britain. Scarfolk is a dystopian town in the North-West of England gripped by fear of witches, children, babies and salad.
WANT to see Swiss artist Milo Moiré give birth to a painting? No. She’s not got one rolled up inside her vagina. And it’s not certainly not framed. Nothing so conventional for Milo.
Milo uses ink and acrylic filled eggs to create the “compressed birth of a piece of art.” She stuffs the ink balls up her vagina and squirts them out. There are women in Bangkok who use brushes to produce passable forgeries of the Haywain. They might think Milo’s work no big deal. But Milo is white, naked and likes the big portrait, much as Rolf Harris used to. Her work matters.
Lest you think this simple exhibitionism – remember, she’s naked (ink stains clothes, dude) – Milo is here to tell us that it is all deeply layered in meaning. It is deeply serious.
GARY Lineker flogs fatty food crisps to sports fans. And in Germany, the budding sport stars can tuck into World Cup 2014 Kinder Surprise eggs, such as this one featuring Arsenal star Mesut Ozil.
This is his face on the Kinder Überraschung.
This is what you get inside:
READING old romance comic books is like slipping into the subconscious mind of the mid-century female. It was a time when their entire well-being and happiness revolved around dumb men; when every single action and decision was predicated on pleasing oblivious males. Thus, in comic after comic, with rarely an exception, you have the requisite scene of the beautiful female lying in bed pining desperately over some clueless oaf.
No doubt, it’s still pretty common for females to fantasize over men. Women’s Lib made great strides towards creating a more level playing field, but it didn’t do away with human nature. To a certain extent, the cliché is a timeless truth: girls will be girls, and boys will be boys.
AS everyone knows, Record Store Day is to hipsters what Valentine’s Day is to the romantics. It’s enforced fun where naysayers chirp “you shouldn’t need a designated day to show someone you love them/buy records” and generally, everyone is quite annoying about it on both sides of the fence.
Of course, the people who really like RSD are those who love to queue for hours and touts.
Regarding the latter, Paul Weller, complete with his old lady’s haircut, has called for a boycott on the event, after copies of his limited 45 ‘Brand New Toy’ were being sold on eBay for hiked-up prices.
OTHER than a brief Capri pants fad during the early Sixties, women rarely wore pants in public. It was dresses and skirts only. Then the Women’s Liberation movement hit its stride in the Seventies, and the ladies started to get in on the pants action. Just as the miniskirt had been a proclamation of the youth culture, pants became a proclamation of gender equality. If men can wear hideous corduroy bell-bottoms, by God, the women can too!
A WHILE back, we covered some pretty peculiar games; however, there still remain board game curiosities which cry out for your attention. It seems there was no limit to the imagination (and debilitating insanity) of board game manufacturers. For every winner (i.e. Monopoly, Risk, Candyland) there were a hundred losers. Here’s a look at some of those losers.
No doubt, this board game is a staple in the NSA break rooms. “Video Village” has such a nice sound for a mass surveillance system; much better than London’s “Ring of Steel”. How fitting that it shows a woman behind bars.
RIP Gabriel García Márquez, 1927-2014: